Essential Oil Tips,Tricks and Basic Blends

Updated on May 17, 2019
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Mel has been working towards her own well-being goals with a love of meditation, essential oils, hiking, pilates, yin yoga and orienteering.

Are You Considering Making Your Own Essential Oil Blends?

Scents have a multitude of gifts. They can transport us to another time if we smell something that reminds us of fond childhood memories, they can be used medicinally to help relieve symptoms of illness, they can refresh the space around us and even simply remind us of a person we love, like a favourite aunt who used to wear a special perfume.

If you have already dabbled with essential oils, from adding them to your bath or rubbing them into your temples to relieve a headache, and are considering branching out to create your own blends, then this article will cover a few of the basic tips and tricks to consider before you begin. I will throw in some favourite blend recipes to get you started!


"Nothing is more memorable than a smell. One scent can be unexpected, momentary and fleeting, yet conjure up a childhood summer beside a lake in the mountains."

- Diane Ackerman

Let Us Begin With Tips...

Before you begin selecting the ingredients and materials you will need to create you own unique essential oil blends, keep in mind some of the following tips which will help guide you along the way:

  • It is a good idea to research scents that create a good base layer. Then your middle and your top complimentary layers. You can mix two, three... as many as you like but a good base is key, it will make up approximately 50% of your blend so choose wisely. Examples of base layer scents are Ylang Ylang, Vanilla, Jasmine and Clove to name a few
  • It is always important to keep in mind that essential oils are concentrated, so while working with them before they are diluted, stay safe and keep them away from your skin. Use gloves, droppers, spoons, funnels, etc
  • Test only a few drops in your blend to begin with. Start small. You can always make bigger batches later on. You do not want to waste any of your oils, they can be expensive
  • Make sure you understand which oils are safest and which to avoid until you are more confident. Some oils cannot be used during different stages of pregnancy and others are not safe around pets
  • Research which scents promote different benefits. For example, lavender is, of course, wonderful as a sleep aid, while Lemongrass is uplifting for energy
  • Also, it is a good idea to research a scent guide. This way you will have an idea about what an oil will smell like before you consider purchasing or mixing it. For example, Citronella is considered a citrus scent, Juniper is a woody scent and Nutmeg adds spice to a scent
  • Mix your oils in a well-ventilated area. They can be very strong and even overwhelming at times!
  • Shop around when you are ready to purchase your essential oils. Different companies have different prices ranging from inexpensive to very expensive
  • Some oil scents evaporate rapidly, and others slowly over time. Make sure you research how long an oil holds it scent when considering your blend, otherwise it will change as different aspects disappear
  • And my most important tip? LOVE the scent YOU create! Not all scents are for everyone. You may enjoy a particular oil yet a friend might not feel comfortable with it at all. And that is okay. Your blend, your way, your enjoyment

"A good fragrance should have a certain personality that makes people identify the scent with you." - Shakira


Next, On To Tricks...

There are a few little tricks to keep in mind when blending your own essential oils, some of these might come in handy!

  • Remember, a quick basic breakdown to keep in mind for a blend is approximately 50% base layer, 30% middle layer, 20% top layer
  • Pipettes are very cheap, light, helpful, washable and reusable
  • You can visit your local chemist, new age shop, discount store, anywhere oils are sold with test bottles open and smell the different blends that have already been created. This way you can see, touch and test blends in person before you start
  • Join a forum of like-minded people who are interested in oils and blending their own. Ask as many questions as you need to and you can help each other learn and have a great support network for if you get stuck along the way
  • Keep a notepad handy and write down your blends as you make them, even the ones that do not work out. This way you have a record so you don't repeat mistakes or so you don't forget the perfect blend!
  • Coffee beans. Have a small bowl or cup of coffee beans covered near you. Between sniffing each scent its important to clear your olfactory palate so you do not get a headache or become overwhelmed
  • When you finish making your blend, it should be kept in either a dark blue or amber glass bottle. This is because light can affect the life span of your scents. So a darkened or shaded bottle will help store your blends for longer
  • If you can find the bottles mentioned in the previous point with cork stoppers, this will also contribute to the storage life of your oils. Cork will not absorb essential oils and also it will not absorb outside pollutants
  • You do not have to apply your oils to your skin. You can use them in an oil diffuser, make a bracelet of lava beads and drop some on each bead and create a scented jewellery piece, make candles scented with your blend, and many more!


Basic Blend Recipes

Name of recipe
Associated scents
Floral, Woody, Fruity
15 drops lavender, 10 drops vetiver, 5 drops frankincense, 5 drops ylang ylang, 5 drops orange
Fruity, Herbal
3 drops lime, 3 drops grapefruit, 1 drop eucalyptus
Stress Free
Fruity, Floral, Woody
4 drops lemon, 3 drops peppermint, 2 drops lavender, 2 drops frankincense

"Scents evoke very, very powerful memories, whether it's the scent of someone that you know and someone that you love, or if it's a meal that your mother made." - Blake Lively


This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.

© 2019 Mel Richards


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